Hundreds of white nationalists were expected to converge on Washington, D.C., for the second “Unite the Right” rally. But only a small gathering of them showed up — and they were “vastly outnumbered” by counterprotesters, BuzzFeed reported.
As the group arrived, they were surrounded by a swarm of police, media, and counterprotesters. They were also met with swearing and jeers. Some accounts estimated there were only about 20 white nationalists, the report stated.
"There were a lot of people who were at last year's rally who are very scared this year," Jason Kessler, the "Unite the Right” organizer, told the few supporters who did show up, BuzzFeed reported.
Why was the turnout so low?
Kessler blamed others for the low turnout.
"A lot of these people who are tough guys, wannabe Nazi types said, 'Don't go. It's gonna be a shooting gallery. You're gonna be hurt if you go,'" he said. "Well, alright, tough guy Nazis. I'm not a Nazi. I'm a moderate and I'm standing here, and you're in your momma's basement."
The low turnout led some of the counterprotesters to argue with each other about what to do, according to the account.
The verbal jeers continued and counterprotesters were seen carrying signs such as “Nazis, go home,” and “You Nazi sh*******s are outnumbered."
The police presence helped keep the two sides from becoming violent, the report stated.
What happened in Charlottesville?
Kessler originally planned two anniversary rallies: One in Charlottesville, Virginia, and one in Washington, D.C. But his application in Virginia was rejected. He filed a lawsuit against the city in March, but dropped it earlier this month.
In his permit application for the Washington rally, Kessler said the event was a “white civil rights rally” intended to “protest civil rights abuse in Charlottesville,” BuzzFeed reported.
In Charlottesville, far-left demonstrators gathered Sunday and attempted to visit the street where a woman was killed last year. But police had blocked the area. Four people were arrested, BuzzFeed reported. Two people were arrested for disorderly conduct and another was charged with disorderly conduct after a state trooper saw her spit in the face of another protester.